Thrive Architect – Everything Has a Beauty but Not Everyone Sees it!
Without a doubt Thrive Themes has to be my all time favorite, all their plugins are awesome and their new Thrive Architect is without exception. During 2014, originally I only intended to buy their Thrive Content Builder, but during the checkout process, I was offered an unbelievable deal to buy their membership. It was a done deal that I never regretted.
Though Thrive Content Builder is obsolete now, you are still free to read my review: Thrive Content Builder Review: The Better #1 WYSIWYG Editor. It's an excellent read, and if anything, it will give you insight how Thrive Themes have simplified its interface with Architect.
Over the last few years various WYSIWYG editors have emerged and for sure there's plenty of competition now. It's for this reason I wanted to create a Thrive Architect review to show you just how impressive it is and how it stands out above the rest.
Without further due, let's see how this awesome plugin works and what key elements there are to make your website not only function better but make it a cut above all others.
why is Thrive Architect a better WYSIWYG editor?
Thrive Architect isn't just a rebranded name from Thrive Content Builder or something slightly polished...it's actually a totally new interface and one I believe you'll love.
Architect is a huge 30MB plugin; and though there's so a lot packed inside it, it amazingly doesn't slow down your website, and so loading time is super fast!. I heard that Architect will save you installing at least twenty plugins.
When I received an email from Thrive that all I needed to do was update the plugin, it left me and others confused and of course apprehensive. However, we were reassured this was an easy process and it wouldn't harm our previous work made with Thrive Content Builder.
Knowing that all my posts were going to remain the same gave me peace of mind, so I went ahead with the update. Just as Thrive predicted the updating process went very smoothly, though I'm sure they tested the plugin plenty of times beforehand.
QUICK TIP: The above image was placed inside a right side column. I styled it with a Polarized look and added some shadowing, some alt-text...check it out by hovering over it, and a caption with a link to my Thrive Content Builder review and gave it a green background. Lastly, I added a 15px white border.
To be honest, I was quite shocked how different its interface was, though I was surprised how much easier it was to learn and work with compared to Thrive Content Builder, it is so easy a five-year-old can fathom it.
How Does Architect Work?
After installing the plugin and activating it you'll want to create a post with it. Once inside WordPress editor click on the green button 'Edit With Thrive Architect' to start your work.
This is the fastest, most intuitive front-end visual editor on the market for WordPress to help you create beautiful websites. You can create awesome, engaging and visually impressive content & beautiful layouts for your site.
You can create almost anything you want without having to go into your WordPress editor. In fact, you can drag and drop the WordPress editor into Architect...how cool is that?
Its simple drag & drop allows you to position any element exactly where you want, and there's zero loading time when dragging elements into articles. All changes are effortless and instant.
As you can see once you're ready to go, you'll first see a number of feature settings either at the left or at the right side of your screen, this is dependent on your set up preference. When Thrive Architect first became available there were thirty-four elements, there are now thirty-nine and it's growing.
To sum it up here are all the elements currently available:
QUICK TIP: The image above features a 1px blue border, shadowing to lift it and 25px cornering. I also added some alt text and title, which you can check out by hovering over it.
Inside each element are many features and obviously too many to list, but I'll do my best to go through a few. Some features remain the same as was in Thrive Content Builder. With that in mind, today I'll run you through some of Thrive Architect's biggest changes.
Below is an image of Architect's sidebar. When your new post is loaded, the first thing most noticeable is the sidebar layout that contains all the Elements, and how you've the option to switch it from left to right. Some bloggers prefer working from the left and others prefer it from the right. I personally prefer working from the left.
The left and right element tabs in the two images below are different. I wanted to show you how easy it is to find whatever you need by scrolling the tab. When you click on the arrow, the element tabs can be hidden on the screen. The little arrow tucks itself away at the side of your screen so when you want it visible again all you have to do is click on it.
QUICK TIP: Click on the images above to open up full-size!
Architect Best Elements & Features
When you click on one of the Element tabs, you're then presented with an array of other options to do some serious decorating. One of the most profound moments that I've come to realize is that you DO NOT need to know any HTML or CSS.
Even if you're HTML savvy, you'll now know that with Architect you can create complex articles and layouts without using any code. For me, this is an absolute bonus because it allows me to be creative much quicker. Architect really is the most intuitive editor ever seen!
Without further due here are a few examples of what Architect is capable of doing:
Paragraph & Text offers features such as unlimited font colors, unlimited font highlights, font face, font size, line height, text transform, letter spacing, typefocus animation, text shadow, layout & positioning, alignment, background styling, borders & corners, unlimited paragraphs in one text-box and much more.
Button offers features such as styling, icon add-ons & secondary text, unlimited colors, button size and can stretch full-width, alignments, fonts, letter spacing, layout & positioning, floating & layering, borders & corners, shadowing, and much more. On this post, I have given you numerous animations.
Images offer features such as various stylings, add caption & open in full-size, grayscaling, opacity & blurring, borders, cornering & shadowing, animations, and much more.
Background Section offers features such as stretching images and content to fit screen width and height, decorating backgrounds with slanted edges, pointers, dividers & shadowing; various typography options as explained in the button options, letter spacing text shadowing, and much more.
QUICK TIP: I dragged and dropped the above button, then added an icon to the left and some drop shadowing around the button. I gave it 8px cornering and a linear graduated background. I then added 1px letter spacing with some text shadowing and typefocus animation. Also, let's not forget it offers a direct link to Thrive Architect.
Different Video Options
Video 1. Here is a quick-start tutorial by Shane at Thrive Themes explaining how to set up your new post with Architect. The good news is this tutorial and others are available when you buy Thrive Architect, so you'll never miss out. This video opens in a new tab.
QUICK TIP: The above Quick-Start Tutorial video code was placed inside a Custom HTML box.
Video 2. Codes from YouTube, Vimeo, WordPress, Vimeo, Wistia and more can be placed inside Architects Video Box element. This video doesn't open in a new tab, you are free to watch Thrive Architect updates without having to move from this post.
QUICK TIP: Architects Video Box offers various styling options, I used their Gray Monitor option. You can start the video at any point you wish, use autoplay, hide titles - logos - controls, add a full-width screen and more. It also offers a thumbnail option, extra padding and margins.
Thrive's Customizable Landing Pages
Thrive's landing pages come with big bang improvements such as...funnels...sales pages...homepages...product launching pages, countdown pages, atomic landing pages and more added regularly. There's also the bonus of plugin, optin, webinar integrations and more.
These are to name a few of why Thrive Architect is so much better than anything I've used before! With over 200 beautifully designed and 100% conversion-focused landing page templates included, you simply can't go wrong! And, if that wasn't enough you can grab more templates with The Landing Factory. For additional information check out my review The Landing Factory – Just When You Thought You’d Exhausted All Options!
QUICK TIP: Click on the image above to open up full-size!
Atomic landing pages are newly set out by the SEO, Shane Melaugh. Templates include; video sales page, download page, webinar registration page, webinar streaming page, webinar replay page, lead generation page, confirmation page. Some of these are automatically included with Thrive's themes, to access them in their themes go to the pages from the WordPress dashboard.
As part of Thrive University, Shane has prepared a template with very basic elements - header, sub-header, text and call-to-action. Users can insert their most effective words & sentences using Architect's copywriting technique. This is truly awesome and extremely useful for those wanting to learn basic copywriting techniques to boost conversion rates.
Turn a Boring Website Alive
Some improvements include readily available icons, mobile viewing mode, graphics, full-width options, button resizing and styling. There's easier WordPress editing such as font face, font size, line height, text transformation and floating, letter spacing and shadowing, margin and padding, layering, borders, corners and shadowing, background transformation; and these are to name a few...all with easy 'click-to-edit' functionality.
Let me also not forget to mention their countdown timers and lead generation forms that integrate with your favorite email marketing tools. Why not update or turn a boring website alive with animations, hover effects, animated texts and more.
One thing to note is that Architect is obviously best used for Thrive WordPress themes, check my reviews. However, I and other bloggers use Architect with all types of themes and have had great success. On my other sites, I use Genesis themes and Architect together with zero issues.
Here is some more good news...if you own a free WordPress theme, freemium or premium theme, then Architect will work just as good as Thrive or Genesis. Please note though that free themes always have limitations, and the longer you blog the more frustrating it becomes because you start to find you can't do what you'd like to do, which then means you have to find more plugins to get the job done.
Building Your List
Architect can build your email list with one click. Here's a list of some of the service that can be integrated using API.
- Active Campaign
- Convert Kit
- Campaign Monitor
- Send Grid
- Infusion Soft
- Mailer Lite
- SG Autoresponder
If your email provider isn't listed above, then you can easily integrate it with a single piece of code provided by your email provider.
Commenting & Social Boost
Facebook Comments: Many bloggers prefer Facebook Comments over WordPress Comments, it definitely has its advantages. If you don't ownThrive Architect and want this feature for your site, you'd have to use yet another plugin.
Thrive have developed Facebook Comments easier than ever to integrate, it's as simple as drag and drop. You can also style it using a light or dark color scheme, change social popularity from new to old or vice-versa, limit comments, add moderators, add borders and corners. I gave the preview image below a 1px blue border with 25px curved edges.
This facebook commenting is live, feel free to test it...
Disqus Comments: This option is relatively new and is as easily integrated as Facebook Comments. Integration and styling are also as easy. To integrate Disquss all you need is your forum name and URL to get started.
With the image preview below, I gave it a 3px green border, 25px curved edges and added 10px padding on all four sides.
Thrive have recently developed their own comments plugin, though not related to Architect, it is an option to consider. It can be bought as a standalone plugin or is included with Thrive Themes full-membeship plan.
Click to Tweet: Another wonderful drag and drop option and easy to integrate with Twitter. I always offer this Tweet option to all my readers because it produces a massive response. I've personalized it with a 1px blue perforated border and changed the font to 20px.
Other things you can change are the font face, font color, letter spacing, typefocus animation, text shadowing, background colors and more.
Everything Has A Beauty But Not Everyone Sees It! The Number one #WYSIWYG Editor - Without a doubt #ThriveThemes has to be my all time favorite, all their plugins are awesome and their new #ThriveArchitect is without exception.
How About Widget Integrations?
With Thrive Architect you can add widgets such as Optin Forms, Capture Testimonials, Display Testimonials, and Shortcodes. Lets check out some of these options:
Optin Forms: Thrive Architect optin form is limitless compared to Thrive Content Builder. You're free to add one or multiple services, add redirects or link to any URL of your choice and you can get quite creative with your styling.
I kept my optin form simply by personalizing my text, adding 10px padding and some shadowing around the form to make it stand out.
This optin form is live so feel free to add your details to get up-to-date offers and latest posts.
Capture testimonials: Thrive Ovation is a standalone plugin or comes with Thrive Themes full-membership plan. Ovation offers capture and display testimonials. To fully grasp how amazing this plugin is take a read of my article Thrive Ovation Review – Building Cutting Edge Testimonials Easily.
Again, I kept this widget simple by offering three questions, adding 10px padding and some shadowing around the form to make it stand out. This widget is live, feel free to add your details if you'd like to be added to my testimonial page.
Graphic Building Blocks
As you've seen thus far there are plenty of graphic options within each element. One of the smartest developments in Architect is being able to make graphics visible on mobile and tablet browsers at a click of a button. Here are some more examples of what Architect is capable of achieving.
Background Sections: This element is particularly clever, here I'm displaying two backgrounds. I designed the top background first then cloned it to design the bottom. Overall both took less than five minutes.
This is a full-screen background with a green gradient background color. I have added two columns and 20px padding around the text and change the font colors. You could make a full page out this!
Any element from Architect plugin can be added. You have the ability to change the colors, gradience, add borders, change its height, images, widgets, paragraphs and much more.
I cloned the above background with Architects one click and turned off the full-width option. I added some white text and shadowing, changed the column widths, added an image and a link, and changed the background color to blue with one click.
Styled Lists: These are a great way to display comparisons, they are easy to set up and change to any design. Previously with Thrive Content Build there weren't many options, but with Thrive Architect this changed for the better.
Below I add three columns giving each one external shadowing. Box one is obviously plain white, box two is red gradient, and box three is green with a pattern. There are now hundreds of icons ready available with Architect; I enlarged box three icons, made its text bold, added a 1px black border, some shadowing, and gave the third box 50px round edges.
Images and Buttons: Wow this is off the scale, below I added my image then added a button overlay. This was relatively easy to do by first adding my image, made it slightly transparent, then added my button.
Once I was happy with my button design, I then used the advanced options to position it. Forget about trying to find a nice button image on Google then redesigning in Photoshop, it can all be done in Thrive Architect.
Desktop, Tablet and Mobile Viewing
Talk about awesome features, Architect offers different viewing capabilities for desktop, tablet and mobile. In this article, a couple of my buttons looked okay on my desktop, but in tablet and mobile viewing mode they were too big. In Architects Responsive Viewing Mode, I was able to change their sizes, fonts and more; this made each button different in each responsive mode, without affecting my work.
What's even more interesting is should you want a completely different design or even have different content on your mobile, tablet or desktop, then it's perfectly doable.
Amazingly here you have it all, you can omit any element, change any element on mobile, tablet or desktop. Each viewing mode can be changed separately and have it's own responsive look and feel.
Summarizing this beast
Ok, now you know that I really like Thrive Themes, all their plugins, themes, forum, support, university, webinars and anything else I've missed off this list. So, could there be anything that I dislike about Thrive Architect?
There are glitches in every plugin and theme on the internet no matter where you buy them, including Thrive Themes. There has only been one glitch that I've experienced, and it's the occasional freeze. I feel this is very minor, and to be honest it's never been bothersome!
One of the biggest pros owning any of Thrive Themes products is that their support is awesome. More than often, whatever you report, response time is quick and it's usually solved very quickly. Other bonuses include lightening fast posts, features are modern, stylish with constant updates, drag and drop elements, there's regular training, email training, webinars and much more.
Once you've started using Architect, you'll never want to go back to WordPress Editor, it's that good! Wouldn't it be good if Thrive Themes offered a few days to try this beast out before buying it because I know you'd love it!
Well, here's their risk free offer...
If for any reason, you don't like this amazing plugin after buying it, you can get a full refund anytime within 30 days after your purchase. There you have it 30 days trial!
Architect, in my opinion, is a steal deal at $67 per year. Once bought, your yearly subscription price is guaranteed to never increase. Every year, that's the price you pay by default regardless of inflation.